Thursday, November 19, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
The Canadian provinces owe their first start on the road to prosperity to the fur trade. The French pioneers discovered that as the Native Indians were ignorant of the value of the furs which they accumulated, an enormous profit was possible to the successful trader in those articles. In the infancy of the industry there was absolutely no limit to the percentage of profit, as the Native Indians would exchange the most valuable of pelts for European trinkets that were worth nothing except the cost of transportation. The trade in furs with the natives soon created a class known as coureur des bois or rangers of the wood, whose untamable licentiousness brought scandal upon the traffic, and led to the licensing system, which itself soon became subject to abuse. During twelve or more months these men would be absent from the trading-posts, when they would return with canoes laden with packs of beaver and other skins, with the proceeds of the sale of which they would indulge in the most extravagant dissipation. Their funds would thus soon become exhausted, and they would again disappear on a voyage for subsistence.
The British merchants of
The preparation of most skins for packing and transportation is by no means so difficult as might appear. After being stripped from the animal they are carefully cleaned of fat and flesh, and dried in a cool, dry place. When thoroughly dry they are ready for shipment.
The fur trade has been split up into departments, and very few firms carry on all the branches of the business, as was formerly done, under one roof. The taxidermist may be said to conduct a collateral branch of the fur industry. The manufacturing furriers and fur dealers represent an enormous investment of capital, and most of them are importers and exporters as well. There are a large number of important manufacturing firms in
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Monday, November 9, 2009
Empire - run by Doolittle, Irwin & Wright
Atlas – run by Geo. Seeley
Magnolia - run by Chas. Smyth
I was only able to find two examples of billheads for
Friday, November 6, 2009
The first flour mill built in Minnesota was run by the government. The mill was built by soldiers from Fort Snelling in 1823 at St Anthony’s Falls. This was the beginning of the Minnesota wheat and flour industries. The earliest flour mill built with government help in Minnesota was built by Lemuel Bolles in Afton in 1845-1846. Merchant milling in Minnesota made its first substantial beginning in 1854 when Eastman, Rollins & Upton erected a mill on Hennepin Island. The mill was dubbed "The Minnesota" and was the first to ship flour to the eastern markets. As the railroads began linking Minneapolis to the west in the late 1860s the number of Minneapolis flour mills grew rapidly.
When flour was made from the hard spring wheat of the Northern Plains using conventional milling techniques, it was discolored and speckled with particles of husk or bran, and it did not keep well. In addition, conventional mill stones destroyed much of the most nutritious part of the wheat kernel. In 1870, Edmund La Croix of Faribault went to Minneapolis and introduced the middlings purifier into the Washburn B mill which increased the value of Minnesota flour from $1 to $2 per barrel. The middlings purifier resulted in a revolution in the manufacturer of flour. Instead of grinding as much flour as possible on the first grinding, the aim came to grind as little as possible on the first grinding.